Jump to content
IGNORED

Tidal Download Audio File Size


Rick Ty
 Share

Recommended Posts

I need to listen to Tidal offline in areas that do not have high speed internet and streaming is not a viable option.  When using the HiFi download option on Tidal to store music on an Android or IOS device, does anyone know what is the true quality of the downloaded music on my portable device?  I have heard that the downloaded file is not truly lossless or anywhere even close.  The reason I ask is that I am thinking of buying a high end  Android DAP and high end DAC to replay downloaded music from Tidal in areas that streaming is not a viable option.  Am I wasting money on technology to replay a poor quality downloaded music file from the Tidal Streaming Service.  Finally, if Tidal download quality is not great, are there other streaming services that provide a better option for offline music? 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can configure your device to download the lossless CD version of albums.  That said there is also MQA versions which are lossy versions of albums, so as long as you choose to download the CD version you are fine.  As it stands right now mobile hasn't implemented MQA unfolding so the MQA version would be of lesser quality than the CD version.

Roon Rock->Auralic Aria G2->Schiit Yggdrasil A2->McIntosh C47->McIntosh MC301 Monos->Wilson Audio Sabrinas

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Dr. Tone for your response.  I am familiar with the mobile settings for Tidal.  I have selected the highest quality (HiFi) when downloading.  I was told however that people have done measurement on the file size of music downloaded on Tidal (using the Hifi setting for download and offline playback) and that the files were highly compressed (and not CD quality).  I have no way of measuring this.  The music sounds good to me but i am not sure I want to invest in a really high quality Android DAP if the majority of what i listen to is offline content from streaming services such as Tidal (and if it is true that the download quality is less than CD quality.  Note:  I am not questioning the quality of streaming as that is clearly lossless in most instances.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's easy enough to test. Start by downloading an album and checking the size of the stored data. If it matches typical FLAC data rates, it's probably fine. If you're still unconvinced, connect a USB to S/PDIF converter and capture the playback of the same track played online and offline. If there's not a perfect match, something funny is going on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok. I am not a math wiz but let’s see if I got this right. A typical CD of 60 minutes in length when ripped using FLAC will take up 300 MB in storage space (according to the Google) I downloaded a 70 minute album in Tidal using the HIFI setting and it  measured in it at 334 MB. Thus if my assumptions are correct, than downloading an album on Tidal or using FLAC to rip a CD will render similar quality assuming it is correct to measure music quality by the size of the file rendered. 

 

Is is my logic/analysis correct?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That size is reasonable for FLAC (the bit rate depends on the music). A size less than 200 MB would have raised suspicions. Now they could of course be storing a lossy version and padding it out to a plausibly lossless size. The question is, would they bother. I think not.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...
On 1/26/2018 at 2:48 AM, Dr Tone said:

You can configure your device to download the lossless CD version of albums.  That said there is also MQA versions which are lossy versions of albums, so as long as you choose to download the CD version you are fine.  As it stands right now mobile hasn't implemented MQA unfolding so the MQA version would be of lesser quality than the CD version.

The MQA version is 24/48 v the 16/44 Flac/cd version so MQA sounds better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share



×
×
  • Create New...